Just as I was thinking that, while I need to do some Advent writing and processing for myself, I might as well switch this blog over to private, a few hardy commenters showed up. So, I guess I'll try to keep going, and also let you know that I have a plan:
I'm trying to give some thought to the Advent Sunday lectionary texts, one at a time. If you don't know what those are: many Christian churches establish readings for each Sunday (each day, actually) over the course of a three-year cycle. Preachers who rely on that cycle of texts will be able thereby to guide their congregations through a large and representative chunk of the Bible via their Sunday sermons over the course of three years. The daily readings include a passage from the Hebrew Bible, from a Psalm, from a gospel passage, and from another Greek Bible text. The three year cycle enables a year to be devoted to each of the three synoptic (look it up!) gospels; readings from the Gospel of John appear around Easter. Since the liturgical year begins on the first Sunday of Advent, a new lectionary year has also just begun -- with Matthew as the gospel focus.
I'm also trying to be attentive to other Advent contemplations, and so on the days when I'm not ruminating about Scripture, I plan to highlight some other bloggers or websites. Today, I'm delighted to refer you to my friend Michelle's first Advent post over at Quantum Theology.
Finally, I'm writing from my own perspective. We are in Year Three of life without our son. I remember little of the last two Advent seasons, although I seem to have written quite a bit. If you have found your way here, you are probably experiencing some holiday difficulties of your own. What I write may seem too upbeat and hopeful if you are in a time of despair and hopelessness; it may be too raw and painful if you have moved on. I know, because you honor me with comments and emails, that those reading this are in every kind of place with every imaginable and complex kind of loss. I wish I could do justice to each and every person and situation, but the best I have to offer is the authenticity of my own experience, and my Advent hope that it will encourage you to delve into your own.
For now, you might wander over to Michelle's. She's writing about Alfred Delp, S.J. this year ~ someone whose courage and faith, honed as a prisoner of the Nazis, we can trust in our own times of challenge and anguish.